Coalition endorses bill removing legal obstacles to dismantling of memorial to Soviet army

  • 2022-05-09
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - The government coalition on Monday agreed on support for legislative amendments drafted to remove legal obstacles to the dismantling of a Soviet-era monument in Victory Park in Pardaugava, Riga. 

Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins (New Unity), MP Raivis Dzintars (National Alliance), MP Juris Puce (Development/For) and Transport Minister Talis Linkaits (Conservatives) announced the coalition's decision to journalists following the weekly coalition meeting. 

As reported, the Saeima Foreign Affairs Committee on May 6 voted to support the intention to suspend an article in the agreement between Latvia and Russia, which regulates the maintenance of memorial structures and mass burial sites.

The Committee assessed Article 13 of the intergovernmental agreement on the social protection of Russian military pensioners and their family members living in Latvia, which has so far been mentioned as the main argument for the protection of the Soviet-era monument in Riga's Victory Park. Six members voted in favor of suspending the article, while one abstained. The committee has a total of nine members.

Recently, in connection with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the question of the existing Soviet-era monument at Victory Park, and the possibilities to dismantle it have come to the fore.

The Conservatives faction of the Saeima has submitted a draft resolution to the parliament to move forward with the intention to dismantle the monument in Victory Park. Parliament is due to review this proposal next week.